Well, it’s official. The results are in and, defying the polls and widespread belief, Donald Trump has become the 45th president of the United States.
How did he achieve this? Was it due to experience? No. Was it down to charm and likeability? I think not. Donald Trump won the election through astute marketing and media savvy.
To avoid the impression we’re advocating emulating him entirely, we’ve pulled out a few of his more discerning points and wrapped them up with a pussy bow on top.
Know your audience
Trump’s supporters were predominantly white, male and poor. He was aware that this demographic felt disillusioned with the status quo and felt like they weren’t being heard. Knowing this, his subsequent jingoistic rhetoric addressed their concerns. Knowing he would never attract the cosmopolitan neoliberal types, he made no attempt to dilute his message and avoided alienating his core supporters.
Before starting any campaign, know who your consumer is. Be aware of their particular pain point and address it positively in a targeted, relevant and relatable way. Make sure that any message speaks to your key demographic. Most brands are so eager to reach everyone; they often end up reaching no one.
Know your brand
Audacious, bold, rude, misogynistic. Regardless of your view of Donald Trump, you can’t deny his brand offering has been consistent. Whether he’s judging Miss America contests, firing people on The Apprentice or running for the most powerful office in the world, his consistency in tone allows people to feel like they know him and know what they can expect from him.
People need to believe that what they see is what they get. This can only be done through brand development and management. Companies in turn need to be aware of their own brand or, more importantly, how their brand is perceived by their consumers. Taking a stance is fine but it needs to be authentic and ring true with consumers.
Make your message clear
Trump’s key message was clear and consistent throughout his campaign; immigration. He may have added in the odd gaffe here or there but, most of the time, he understood the importance of keeping on message. By understanding what would resonate most with his supporters and delivering it in clear, easy-to-follow soundbites, he made it easier for his supporters to digest and engage.
In today’s world, consumers are constantly bombarded with messages and brands have to be clear and engaging to break through the din. Don’t overcomplicate or try to cram too much in. Simple, clear and, above all, engaging content will always deliver.
Strong call to arms
Make America great again. Whilst critics could say this is an abstract slogan that ultimately means nothing, it conveys a sense of action. It invites people to interpret their own meaning, encouraging consumer participation. As a result, his supporters feel like they are no longer passive and can take destiny back into their own hands to change their lives for the better.
Every campaign should include a strong call to action. They have been proven to increase and drive consumer engagement and allow the consumer to take an active role. Even beyond direct marketing, some of the industry’s most successful campaigns have included active slogans; think Nike’s “Just do it!” or Volkswagen’s “Think small.”.
Whilst much of his rhetoric, blunders and gaffes read like something straight from a what not to do list (during a campaign or in everyday life), there are things we can and should glean from his campaign machine. Know your consumer. Let them know how and why you can fulfil their needs. Communicate in a clear and consistent manner that invites active engagement.
If following these key points can get Trump in office, just imagine what they can do for your brand.